Thursday, December 27, 2007

Why you should blog more.

One of my biggest failings has been not being consistent about keeping up with my online journal once we had the kids. And I had no excuse--I managed to write less and less during the very time that blogging was getting so popular. I'd even predated an Internet term. That hasn't happened since I'd started ntalking. I mean, "instant messaging."

But while I had tinges of regret, they were fairly unformed until today. I was reading a blog entry from a friend describing her daughter's imaginary friend. I smiled and thought to myself, "just like...." and I blanked. Totally blanked. I'd forgotten what the names were of Abby's two imaginary friends that she made up when she was 2 years old, and who lasted until she was about 4 years old.

In a panic, I asked Abby their names. She looked at me, surprised, thought for a second and said, "gee, I dunno." Oh no! Here I was, the memory keeper of her precious early childhood, and I'd failed her. I called Brian, and he didn't remember, either. Similarly, mom and dad were no help at all. We all knew there were two, and that their names rhymed. Beyond that, it was a haze; so tantalizingly close but just past the reach of my memory.

But then Uncle Dan came through. "Hanker," he replied to my urgent instant message.

Yes! Hanker! And Danker, his sister!

Thank goodness for uncles. After that, it all came back to me in a rush: Hanker had hair and eyes just like Abby, and a mom and dad that looked, unsurprisingly, just like Hanker. Hanker liked to follow Abby to school, but unfortunately, it was not Hanker's school.

Blogs are firmly self-indulgent endeavors. But there's something to be said for the way it can save for posterity the collective experience of a family. And save that experience strictly for its own sake. To me, that's just the right kind of self-indulgence.

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